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Priogen Corp Introduces Groundbreaking Herd-Level Surveillance Technology for Chronic Wasting Disease

Priogen’s testing and technology portfolio continues to provide new CWD surveillance options

We need to translate the latest scientific advancements in prion detection into real-world applications that can effectively slow and stop the spread of CWD. This is what Priogen is doing.”
— Dr. Peter Larsen, Co-Founder, CEO, CSO of Priogen Corp.
ST. PAUL, MN, UNITED STATES, March 22, 2024 / -- Priogen Corp, a global leader in prion diagnostic solutions, today announced unprecedented environmental Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) detection services for farmed deer and elk, setting a new standard for proactive monitoring and management of CWD. The announcement is accompanied by the launch of PrioScout, a pioneering tool in the fight against CWD. Leveraging state-of-the-art prion detection technology, PrioScout offers innovative herd-level CWD surveillance options. When combined with Priogen’s broader ranch surveillance program, PrioScout gives ranching operations of all sizes access to revolutionary CWD testing options.

“Traditional approaches to CWD surveillance and management cannot keep up with the spread of the disease, this is clear based on state and federal data over the past few decades. Concern is growing that particular strains of CWD prions will cause disease in wildlife, livestock, and humans. We need to translate the latest scientific advancements in prion detection into real-world applications that can effectively slow and stop the spread of CWD. This is what Priogen is doing”, says Dr. Peter Larsen, Co-Founder, CEO, CSO of Priogen Corp.

Both deer and elk shed CWD prions in saliva and nasal secretions within 3 months after becoming infected. This aspect of CWD biology is leveraged by Priogen’s proprietary swabbing technology which is capable of detecting CWD prions left on particular surfaces by positive animals. When combined with Priogen’s protein diagnostic technologies, swab-based surveillance provides a new proactive approach to CWD management. Priogen works closely with clients to create tailored prion data collection and monitoring plans. Conventional live-animal diagnostic testing approaches often fall short in the early detection of CWD, taking months or years to return positive results, all while the disease is spreading in a particular herd. For this reason, Priogen's services are indispensable for ranchers, veterinarians, zoos, and agencies dedicated to deer and elk management.

“We’ve licensed a variety of technologies that can help fight CWD in new ways, and we are making these widely available. PrioScout and our environmental surveillance systems are the first line of defense. If evidence of CWD is detected, then our live-animal testing options are a second line of defense. Priogen’s environmental surveillance program has already successfully identified CWD-positive animals across several ranches, animals that were ultimately confirmed CWD positive by independent regulatory tests”, says Larsen.

PrioScout is the company’s hardware solution for rapid deployment and CWD monitoring across all operational levels. Farmed deer and elk herds are housed in pens or yards, sharing food and water resources with daily interactions that facilitate CWD transmission events. When deployed in these scenarios, PrioScout serves as an early CWD detection system. The device is loaded with mineral supplements and provides a controlled secretion-based prion monitoring surface, giving producers and managers the unprecedented ability to detect CWD during its earliest stages, without the need for handling individual animals. PrioScout is equipped with three mail-in swab packs designed for surveillance at strategic time points, allowing for confirmatory testing, early intervention, and informed management decisions. Example usages include monitoring herds before shipment and continual CWD monitoring through the enrollment of periodic swabbing services. In instances where CWD has been previously detected, PrioScout is invaluable in assessing spread within a facility, allowing for targeted control measures.

“Priogen's diagnostic services are ushering in a new era of CWD management, enabling early detection far ahead of traditional methods. Our proactive approaches benefit everyone involved, from producers to regulatory bodies, and provide a strategic advantage in combating CWD. There is no cure for this prion disease, it is 100% fatal and infected animals are depositing infectious prions into the environment daily. Urgent action is imperative to curb the spread of this disease. We must act now, the stakes are too high for delay”, says Larsen.

About Priogen Corp:
Located in St. Paul, MN, Priogen is a diagnostic company specializing in the ultra-sensitive detection of pathogenic proteins associated with prion and protein-misfolding diseases of wildlife, livestock, and humans. For more information about Priogen Corp please visit

Marc Schwabenlander
Priogen Corp
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